Coorg Day 1: Thala-Cauveri

Coorg is an amazing place – the quiet, serene place with its villages tucked among the coffee estates are a great way to unwind. Which was perfect for me and my family, when the discussion on the place to visit came up. Even though we yearned to visit Coorg, the reservations and the tickets really was a tough task at hand.

And that was the time, when my brother told me that one of my uncle’s friend has his estate open for Home stays and that its very good. So, just a few phone calls later, our stay was booked and then the excitement started.

While we had confirmed return tickets by Shatabdhi, the onward journey still remained a mystery. Tatkal booking was the only option out. And when we went early morning and found a long queue of 50-60 ppl, ahead of us. I was wondering if people just slept over there in the night, as they used to do outside the American Consulate…. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Anyway, till we got our confirmed tickets in hand, I was literally jumping from my rational discussion on the probability of us getting the tickets and to my other form which was desperately praying to God……you see, faith is a great stress-buster. ๐Ÿ™‚

Now, we boarded the Shatabdhi to Mysore….took a cab from Mysore to Madikare in Coorg and went to our Home stay. WOW, what a location and what an amazing climate !!!

The view from the terrace, adjoining my room....
The beautiful coffee estate....dont miss out that tree !!!

It was pure bliss to face each day with such a delightful cup of nature, facing you and smelling in the fresh blooms – not to forget the pure oxygen that fills the lungs. ๐Ÿ™‚

After a night of fitful sleep, we proceeded towards Thala-Cauvery, which was the place to visit for me….Having had a bath in the Cauvery before it reaches the sea, at Thiruvaiyaru, Trichy and Kumbakonam, my mind was full of expectation to see the source for this great river.

It was a two-hour drive from Madikare to Bhagamandala.

Now, Bhagamandala is a Triveni Sangamam – the first Sangamam in the course of the River Cauvery and is considered a holy place to have a dip in. ย Whether my sins were washed off at that place or not, it sure was a great dip there. But, I was totally unexpected for the coldย water and the tiny fishes going around me.

The Triveni Sangamam at Bhagamandala

After the holy dip, we visited the Bhagandeeswarar temple for a puja. And then set off on another 20 mins drive to Thala-Cauvery. ๐Ÿ™‚

The source of this amazing river is such a small spring, which goes back into the Earth, after spouting out, at this place. ย The river, comes back out of the Earth at a later place.

The source spring of the Cauvery.

No, we are not there in this picture….if you can see the small square of water near the pujari, that’s the source spring of Cauvery. A bigger tank has been made in the front, to enable people to have a bath.

It’s such a beautiful place that I felt so much at peace with myself. ๐Ÿ™‚

There are about 373 steps there, which lead to a sight-seeing spot. And people say that if we are lucky, we can even see the Kerala Coast…..but alas, the mist played spoil sport for us…

Hai na breath-taking ???
The temple view from the top....

On the whole, the scenery, the serene beauty, the feeling of being a part of nature is just amazing, standing there, facing the mountains and the valley.

I called up my patti from there, for she holds such fond memories of her childhood, having a bath in the Cauvery everyday….and me visiting the source of this great river was just so special for her. I re-lived the moment, through my patti. ๐Ÿ™‚

Came back to Madikare, had a hearty lunch. ๐Ÿ˜€

We just had a small trek and visited this Abbey Falls, about 10 mins drive from Madikare. ย It’s so beautiful, but totally unreachable…

Abbey Falls....
Abbey Falls....

Came back totally tired, yet so happy in heart….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This is a place, where I was Wordless and Speechless too....Brilliant view of the valley.
Now, thats what I call a brilliant View !!!

Trekking towards serenity

When everyone announced it was time for a trekking day, I was rather hesitant. I still remember the day in Yercaud last year, where we had gone on a trekking trip and I just slipped and sat on a rock. Nothing much, but still it was there in the back of my mind. ย I attributed that incident to the previous day’s rains in Yercaud and consoled myself.

But here in Coorg, it did drizzle the previous evening, but not to the extent of making our way slippery and all. I convinced myself that this will be a great time to shoo away my fears !!!

When I went to wear my shoes, ppl suggested that I use my chappals as we don’t need shoes for this small trekking experience. Oh dear, what do they know about me and my ever-slippery foot !!!!

Alas, we all got ready, and started walking through the Coffee plantations, learning the names of trees or flowers on the way. The Avocado, Oranges, Silver Oak, Mulberry, Pomegranate and many more flowering trees were introduced to us and we really looked like some Botany students out on an Educational Trip. ๐Ÿ˜€

The initial stages of the trek was going on fine, as the path was on flat levels. After 1 km, everything changed. I was looking down to a valley and the path is totally a steep walk down. While I was wondering if I could make it with my footwear, I see a lot of people just starting to walk down in there flip-flops. Oh dear, how do they manage to walk such a steep slope with that kind of footwear ???

I hesitated, but put up a brave face and started walking down the slope to the valley, which is trying to rush up and meet me. I did slip on the sliding slope, on the gravel, the mud and all, but my matrimonial ties were much too strong in holding me all the time. Thank God, for small mercies. ๐Ÿ˜€

Have you seen the children playing the train game in the park ???? The four of us looked like that, holding onto each other’s shoulders and making our way down – if that can be called trekking. I think this continued for another km or so and I was so so thankful to God, when we reached the end of slippery slope and reached the valley.

And what a sight that greeted us !!! Theres a small stream that rushes during monsoons to a height of 1m, but it was perfect for us, this summer. With just ankle-deep water, it was the height of holidaying fun.

Aint that out of some fairy tale ???

We walked through the water, the perfect massage cum pedicure to our feet. The pebbles and sand mixture giving a funny yet awesome feeling to our feet – it was one such moment of contentment. ๐Ÿ™‚

Do u see the pebbles underneath the water ???

I loved every minute of the time spent at the stream, the water engulfing my feet was such a relief to all the stress points. The minutes trickled by….but we were in no mood to get out of the water. The serenity of that place seems to attract me like a magnet and all thoughts of thirst and hunger vanished from my body. I was at peace with myself, with this World, with this Universe and what more can I ask for ?!?

I think this one explains everything better than words….

I was totally at peace.... ๐Ÿ™‚

On the whole, it was such a wonderful moment to remember forever….the serenity of the surroundings making the whole trek, an awesome memory to treasure in my heart. ๐Ÿ™‚ Don’t you agree ???

Direction-WISE

The most prominent things I remember from my recent visit to Coorg, are the presence of the Sun, the Moon, the Stars and the wonderful Clouds. I was so interspersed with Nature that I kept staring into the star-filled nights, sitting on the terrace, whispering to hubby about things of no relevance – those were really magical moments.

Being on the topic of stars, I was totally happy and proud of myself, when I pointed to the Big Dipper. And now after reading thru the links, I came to know the name of that formation and that it’s always in the northern direction.

There were many other constellations that we were discovering, making shapes all by ourselves, trying to remember the directions – it was so much fun. And that was the time, when the topic came about – how stars guided people in finding directions, when there were no compasses !!! [Read this link to know more on that topic]

Isn’t amazing, how the night sky helps a person to find where they are, if they can really take time to understand the constellations and their messages to us ???

That was the time, I also remembered this part from the recently read book “My Sister’s Keeper”.

When Anna asks her father whether is it true that we can use stars as maps, Brian explains that it’s called celestial navigation and it goes like this.

“You have to measure the altitude of a star, figure out its position using a nautical almanac, figure out what you think the altitude should be and what direction the star should be in based on where you think you are and compare the altitude you measured with the one you calculated. Then you plot this on a chart, as a line of position. You get several lines of position to cross and thats where you go.”

It’s totally confusing and it’s probably like reading Greek or Latin for me, but there are possibilities to find directions, using the natural resources available around us.

Then later were the days when compasses are the basic norms for travel, without which you were considered lost. ย People travelling by the sea or the land, were always found with it.

As technology advanced, there were more and more gadgets and softwares for knowing where you are and where you are heading…..isn’t that the basic truth one should find in life !!!

But, for me, I find this the simplest and yet the powerful thing to find the direction, here in this country, at present. ย I think you’ll agree with me on the way, this dish has bombarded into the homes of India.

And I also read in some forums that the Tata Sky dish should be facing a particular direction for it to work effectively (50-60 deg / south-east I guess) – facing the Satellite for better reception.

So, when I walk through the dark gullies of Chennai, where the power-cut is killing the charm of living, these dish TV receptacles are my guiding light to tell me, which is my direction to follow. Aint that easy ???? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Better still, I hope you all have your Google Maps / GPRS with you, when you travel around….I believe in Dish TV antennas…..really….. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Now, you’ll agree that I am Direction-Wise, right ???? ๐Ÿ˜€

Holidays are HAPPY times !!!

COORG – that was the place where I found myself, almost in tune with nature – enjoying the awesome scenery around me.

Just imagine yourself, waking up to the sight of coffee plants, the tall silver oaks, oranges, avacado trees – its amazing, I tell u. And every moment of the trip was so memorable, that I had difficulty in choosing which one described the Happy Me, for TC’s theme this week.

Then, finally, I chose this one, as this was the highlight of our trip – the time we celebrated our holiday and warmed up ourselves on a cool Coorg Night.

The Height of Celebrations - one of the Happy moments....

And that was just the beginning. It went on like this….the Bonfire celebrations…

Isn't that a perfect celebration ???

Oh !! We had so much fun on that Bonfire night !!! A night to remember… ๐Ÿ™‚

So, TC, this is my entry for this week’s theme –ย HAPPY (Celebrations, Parties, Gifts, Enjoyment,…)

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Hi !!! I hope u all dont mind me being a little wordy here….after all it has been a week since I logged in to WordPress.

I had long, laid back, rejuvenating holiday in Coorg and I am back as fresh as this flower.

Fresh & Lovely, right ????

Will be visiting ur blogs soon….there’s so much work to do. The heat is terrible here, which adds up.

So, how have u all been ???? Looks like most of u have been busy blogging ur heads out, doing Nablopomo….the main reason for my Reader overflow….lemme come and attack the reader soon. ๐Ÿ˜€

Edited to add :

Ppl, plz tell me the name of this flower !!! I really clueless on this. This flower was found in everybody’s fence and it looked damn lovely that I had to capture it. If u can find the name of this flower, it’ll be great. ๐Ÿ™‚